Customer Discovery: How To Interview (Potential) Users

Customer & User Discovery is a vital stage of project development.

We know from the fantastic research carried out by Startup Genome that if we skip any of the startup development path stages (below) that our projects or startups are almost 75% more likely to fail.

Therefore Customer Discovery is one of the most important steps in our journey – get this right, and you’ve got a strong base for your idea to take flight. Get it wrong and you will waste valuable time, resources and energy on an idea which may well fail.

The video we’ve featured today is from this excellent post by Customer Dev Labs about interviewing customers. It’s become a keystone part of content for us here at Lifehack HQ, which has featured in our Online Labs, Weekends and will inevitably play a role in our cutting edge Lifehack Labs program later in the year.

What Justin does really well is outline the Customer Discovery phase is fundamentally different from Customer Validation. He kicks off the video with a poignant reminder – NO PITCHING!

Most first time entrepreneurs (and many serial entrepreneurs for that matter) will try to go about learning whether their proposed solution is hitting the mark with customers by pitching it, rather than seeking out and listening for the problems that customers/users are identifying. Though this may seem a nuance, watch the video to find out why the skill of interviewing for Discovery is different, and how it can be done easily and naturally.

What kind of questions do you ask when interviewing users? What works and what doesn’t?

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